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Rossendale advice worker used client's ID to set up gambling account
A CITIZENS Advice Bureau worker took a 63-year old client's bank details and used them to open an online betting account, a court was told.
Psychiatrist's son and law student Fahad Quraishi committed a 'gross breach of trust' when he pretended to be a client to get money to finance his gambling.
The victim had handed over his Yorkshire Bank card to Quraishi when he was looking to him for guidance at the Burnley branch of the CAB.
Within three days, in the early hours, Quraishi dishonestly obtained an account with Ladbrokes using the card details.
He got £50 and was said to have made further attempts to place bets, but the card had been cancelled or there wasn’t enough money in the account, Burnley Crown Court heard.
The hearing was told the victim, who suffers from depression and obsessive compulsive disorder, had gone to the bureau for help in possibly making a disability living allowance claim, Quraishi had been his adviser and he had thought he could trust him.
The victim had been left upset and suffering sleepless nights over the abuse of trust and the invasion of his privacy.
Quraishi had owned up when arrested and questioned by police and wrote his victim a letter apologising.
But, he then claimed in court he had made admissions which weren't true because he had been fasting and had not taken his ADHD medication.
Quraishi, 24, had earlier been convicted of obtaining a service by deception, by Pennine magisrates. He appealed against the conviction at Burnley Crown Court.
A judge, sitting with two justices, threw out the appeal and said Quraishi had lied in court.
He slammed what Qur-aishi had done as a 'particularly mean little fraud' and said the bench had considered imposing custody.
But, added Recorder John Barrett, they had decided against it, as they knew the conviction would probably end Quraishi's chances of a career in law.
The appellant, of Hollinview Close, Rawtenstall, had been given an 18 month supervision order by the lower court, which will continue, and he must pay £600 costs and £150 compensation.
The victim said in his statement: “I thought I could trust him. This has given me many sleepless nights and caused more stress. I will be even more worried about seeking advice and help in the future."
Joe Boyd, for Quraishi, said he came from a high achieving family.
“The defendant, who went to a private uni-versity in Manchester, clearly had issues.
“He had taken to gambling in his late teens, as he had had no friends. The barrister added:" This was a one off. It was a very small amount of money."
Dismissing the appeal against conviction, Recorder Barrett the appellant's behaviour had been a 'gross breach of trust'.
He told him: “You were a Citizens Advice Bureau adviser — a person in whom people in need of help could be expected to repose a great deal of trust and you abused that trust.”